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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Boud Deun

The Stolen Bicycle

Review by G. W. Hill

The Stolen Bicycle is a very entertaining prog rock instrumental work that has much in common with the music of King Crimson. The musicianship here is very solid and this is a very well conceived album.

The musicians on the album are Steve Persinger, Greg Hiser, Matt Eiland and Rocky Cancelose. To purchase this CD, go to the Cuneiform website at http://members.aol.com/Cuneiform2/cuneiform.html .

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: The Early Years Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Waterford
Mainly in a Red era Crimson mode, elements of Steve Howe`s Tomorrow seem to present themselves here as well. The composition moves in many varied directions.
Rails
A very `60`s rock textured flavor dominates this piece (perhaps a bit reminiscent of Secret Agent Man). The cut also includes more of those Crimsonesque textures, fusion elements and some incredible bass sounds.
Bellfast
Again showing King Crimson leanings, this cut also has Dream Theater, Kansas, Al Dimeola and Frank Zappa influences. The main riff is very powerful.
Saints
A much gentler, softer tone makes up the beginnings of this cut. This provides a strong contrast to the previous segment. This section of Churches is quite evocative, particularly Hiser`s violin work.
Cotton's Sermon
Again combining Kansas and Crimson elements, the fierce tempo of this cut explodes from the calm of the previous section. The piece also shows major hard prog rock chops.
No River Deserves A King
Kansas and jazz techniques merge here.
Ten Pence/Bridges
Featuring Zappaesque moments and seriously powerful fusion tendencies, this song teeters near chaos for moments, and includes some nice violin textures.
A Terrible Accident
Near chaos begins this piece, which includes dramatic riffing, incendiary tempo and directional changes and some boldly dramatic textures.
Orlando/Jacks
A maritime percussion starts the composition, which breaks down to very low key/low tempo material. This is a considerably haunting piece of music.
Burnsville
Similar haunting themes continue in Burnsville for a time. Eventually, however, frantic fusion/prog moments rage forth in a mercurial display of instrumental prowess and quicksilver changes in texture. The number shows strong Crimsonesque elements.
The Last of A Thousand Days
Beginning in a sedate style quite similar to the early moments of the last track, this number carries on in a gentle and inspired jazzish mode. The intensity increases as the song continues on, making this one of the more impressive cuts on the album.
A Famous Rabbit
Metallic Crimson tones begin this cut, which reprises earlier themes, while moving those same themes forward.
Lantern Effect
Frantically driven instrumental work makes up this powerhouse piece.
Desperate Albert Sloop
A more sedate intro provides a short, and needed, break from the energy level of the previous track. The intensity on this one does eventually build again, however.
Train, Rain, Zero
Starting in metallic Rushish tones, almost immediately, the intensity drops to near classical levels. The composition builds organically from there, feeling somewhat Crimsonesque at times.
A Horseshoe Invasion/A Church In York
Intensely frantic riffs begin this track, which rapidly begins to resemble a cross between Dimeola and Crimson.
Broken Spokes
Crimsonesque prog merges with solid rock and fusion.
Two Words
More Crimson textures make up this cut, and that includes both the frantic and sedate sides of the number. The composition combines near cacophony with moments of intense beauty and jazzish wandering for dramatic contrasts. In fact, much of this piece would be quite at home on a modern jazz recording.
 
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